participating at a gang summit.
"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter" Martin Luther King.
Black Panther Party 10 Point Platform
1. We believe that black people will not be free until we are able to determine our destiny.
2. We believe that the federal government is responsible and obligated to give every man employment or a guaranteed income We believe that if the white American business men will not give full employment, then the means of production should be taken from the business men and placed in the community so that the people of the community can organize and employ all of its people and give a high standard of living...
3. We want an end to the robbery by the capitalists of our Black community.
4. We want decent housing, fit for shelter for human beings.
5. We want education for our people that exposes the nature of this decadent American society. We want education that teaches our true history; and our role in the present day society.
6. We want all Black men to be exempt from military service.
7. We believe we can end police brutality in our black community by organizing black self defense groups that are dedicated to defending our black community from racist police oppression and brutality. The Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States gives us a right to bear arms. We therefore believe that all black people should arm themselves for self defense...
8. We want freedom for all Black men held in federal, state, county and city prisons.
9. We want all Black people when brought to trial to Tried in court by a jury of their peer group or people from Black communities, as defined by the Constitution of the United States.
10. We want land, bread, housing, education, clothing, justice and peace. And our major political objective, a Untied Nations supervised plebiscite (election) to be held throughout the black colony in which only Black colonial subjects will be allowed to participate for the purpose of determining the will of Black people as to their national destiny. We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.
8 Points of Attention
1. Speak politely.
2. Pay fairly for what you buy.
3. Return everything your borrow
4. Pay for anything you damage.
5. Do not hit or swear at people.
6. Do not damage property or crops of the poor, oppressed masses.
7. Do not take liberties with women.
8. If we ever have to take captives do not ill treat them.
3 Main Rules of Discipline
1. Obey orders in all your actions.
2. Do not take a single needle or a piece of thread from the poor and oppressed masses.
3. Turn in everything captured from the attacking enemy.
Once Shakur was a threat, he was ticketed for Jaywalking, then arrested and beaten in custody. Had over $100 million and was beginning leadership in the New Afrikan Panthers, doing benefits for, Stop the Violence Movements, funding a home for high risk youth, supporting Central American rallies, solidarity benefits, voter registration, other left wing groups. His program Thug life Movement turned drug dealers into lawful singers. Thug Life Movement intended to establish an ethical code in the ghettos. Thug life stands for The Hate You Five Little Infants Fucks Everybody. Thug meant to Tupac; it was someone who came from oppressive and poverty with little opportunity but nevertheless still made a life for themselves and were proud. His version of Thug was to reach out to the oppressed, poor and the forgotten. In 1992 he brought forth his Code of Thug Life that Crips and Bloods in the Los Angeles area claimed and abided by.Code OF "THUG LIFE":
1. All new Jacks to the game must know: a) He's going to get rich. b) He's going to jail. c) He's going to die. 2. Crew Leaders: You are responsible for legal/financial payment commitments to crew members; your word must be your bond. 3. One crew's rat is every crew's rat. Rats are now like a disease; sooner or later we all get it; and they should too. 4. Crew leader and posse should select a diplomat, and should work ways to settle disputes. In unity, there is strength! 5. Car jacking in our Hood is against the Code. 6. Slinging to children is against the Code. 7. Having children slinging is against the Code. 8. No slinging in schools. 9. Since the rat Nicky Barnes opened his mouth; ratting has become accepted by some. We're not having it. 10. Snitches is outta here. 11. The Boys in Blue don't run nothing; we do. Control the Hood, and make it safe for squares. 12. No slinging to pregnant Sisters. That's baby killing; that's genocide! 13. Know your target, who's the real enemy. 14. Civilians are not a target and should be spared. 15. Harm to children will not be forgiven. 16. Attacking someone's home where their family is known to reside, must be altered or checked. 17. Senseless brutality and rape must stop. 18. Our old folks must not be abused. 19. Respect our Sisters. Respect our Brothers. 20. Sisters in the Life must be respected if they respect themselves. 21. Military disputes concerning business areas within the community must be handled professionally and not on the block. 22. No shooting at parties. 23. Concerts and parties are neutral territories; no shooting! 24. Know the Code; its for everyone. 25. Be a real ruff neck. Be down with the code of the Thug Life. 26. Protect yourself at all times.
Code of Honor, a principled uprightness of character; personal integrity, dignity and pride.Source: John Potash. Social Justice Action Quarterly. Rebel For the Hell of It: The Life of Tupac Shakur, Armond White. Tupac’s Panther Shadow. The Political Targeting of Tupac Shakur, Issue 67 Covert Action Quarterly 1999
OUTLAWS meant to Operate Under Thug Laws As Warriors. The movement would bring The Panthers back in vogue; Tupac’s vision was to have an interracial “lost tribe” political party from all walks of life, convicts, whites, youth from the ghettos who want to be part of a movement, so then his moneys would be used to create community centers. He changed his trademark “W” hand sign (West Coast) to means War. “West Coast and East Coast together (to gain) power for Black Americans.”
Ronin Ro Have Gun Will Travel: The Spectacular Rise and Violent Fall of Death Row Records.
Cathy Scott. The killing of Tupac Shakur
Holler if You Hear Me! Searching for Tupac Shakur. Michael Eric Dyson.
Christian Parenti, Interview with Assata Shakur. Z Magazine May 1998
Gary Webb, Dark Alliance; The CIA, the Contras and the Crack Cocaine Explosion. Randall Sullivan, Labyrinth. A Detective Investigates the Murder of Tupac Shakur and Notorious Big. The Impact of Death Row Record Suge Knight and the Origins of the Los Angeles Police Scandal.
Agents of Repression. The FBI’s Secret War against the Black Panther Party and the American Indian Movement. Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall. The Cointelpro Papers. Documents from the FBI’s Secret Wars Against Dissent in the United States. Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall.
Louis Tackwood. The Glass House Tapes.
South Central L.A.: What's going on?
By Sanyika Shakur
"500 fbi agents comin' after us, license to kill, 30 mil, claimin' it just a drug bust..." Public Enemy
Long before south central L.A. blew up and shouted its third world existence the street organizations ("gangs') that occupy every street here had begun secret top level meetings to try an bring some clarity to the escalating chaos that had everyone literally at every other persons throat. The rebellion, much like colonialism, only served to speed this process up. But it by no means caused the unity of the street organizations. The street organizations here, in So. Central, are primarily New Afrikan and have a twenty-four year history of development. The two base factions are the Crips and Bloods. Within the confines of these respective groups are various chapters, units, sets, and cliques. The Crips alone have 237 chapters. These chapters are divided into sets, the sets are sub-divided into streets and the streets in turn have cliques. It is thus quite safe to say the Crips have a membership of no less than thirty thousand. The Bloods predate the Crips by a few years, but not many. In contrast to the booming membership of the Crips, the Bloods are small and locked into a defensive posture. Their membership does not exceed seventeen thousand. For there to be an adequate overstanding of this phenomenal development, We need to check the climate which the Crips and Bloods were created in. 1969- four years after the death of Malcolm X, three years after the start of the Black Panther Party, 15 years after the beginning of the Counter Intelligence Program (Cointelpro). It is of interest to put it like this, for it points to the time frames in which We have prosperous development towards Revolutionary Nationalist Ideology/ Culture and the time in which the oppressor had to develop counterrevolutionary techniques.
By '69 the BLM was in grave trouble, for various reasons most of us already know. It wasn't popular to speak aloud about ones intent to "Liberate Black Folks" or "Off the Pig." Because the pig was on a move trying to "save his country" and "stop the Black Communists." Because of our naive overstanding of our own power as a nation and the importing of revolutionary ideas, '69 found us split, underground, captured or dead. The amerikans closed out the year with the assassination of Fred Hampton and Mark Clark. They tried to include Geronimo in this " year-end cleanup" but G was too keen and escaped with his life. The oppressor is a keen calculating visionary; he knows the power of propaganda and he is quite literally aware of the sway media can have over people. He had no problem with showing the Mighty Panthers facing down the pigs, shooting down the pigs or being "Bad." No, he had no problem whatsoever with this, 'cause the oppressor is a long term thinker, a planner. He allowed the Panthers to gather a cult following, which simultaneously portraying the Panthers as ego-tripping maniacs that want to 'control the world." This latter image was for the Silent Majority. When he deemed the time right, the political pigs were unleashed and public executions became the order of the day. The oppressor had little problem showing heroic gun battles as long as his forces were victorious. The devastation the people felt as they watched their 'saviors' gunned down, blown up, chased away and turned out was mind boggling. The death toll among the Panthers reached 28. Although pigs were corrected, the media quickly moved the defuse the political intent of such actions. The revolutionaries could not complete for air time with the owners of the stations. Every aggressive act of murder or political assassination was deemed "self-defense,""justifiable homicide, " or "lone assassin." While our every act of self-defense was dubbed "murder," "terrorism," or a "communist plot." We never believed We had gotten that heavy. Cats off the block spewing revolutionary rhetoric had brought the fearful beast out in the oppressor and it caused us to either "shit or get off the pot."
Those who decided to "shit" went underground to function with the various units of the Black Liberation Army. Those who were indecisive or "...didn't believe their own spiel," were blown off the pot, while the remaining folks -The Majority- simply got off the pot altogether with, went home and became americans again. It was in this climate of political assassinations, misinformation, counterintelligence and disruption that the Crips and Bloods in so.cen. L.A. began.
Before the Panthers came to LA there were street organizations. In fact, Bunchy Carter and John Huggins were members of a group called the "Slausons" notorious for rumbles and dominance, both Bunchy and John were "Warlords." But when the Panthers created an alternative to the fratricide, the warlords opted for membership in the Party. Not all members of the street orgs' fell in with the Party. Some joined the reactionary ranks of the 'US" organization and continued in their original capacity as fratricidal tools of the oppressor, killing party members and disrupting real nationalist development. And others joined nothing and faded into the social structure of dependence. Its quite interesting to note that precisely when the Panthers became hunted and shown incapable of defending themselves, did street organizations regroup and resurface. In '69 these "gang members" would have been another generation of Panthers. "But," said the Bangers, "Why be a part of something that cant defend itself?" hence the oppressor had succeeded in portraying the Panthers as a group you didn't want to be a part of.
The street organizations of the Crips and Bloods were the total antithesis of the Panthers structured 10 point program. The political pigs knew this, documented it, and as an intelligence rule, passed it on to their superiors in the FBI. The Crips and the Bloods were allowed to carry on because they summed up the success of the Counter Intelligence Program. For one of the main stipulations in the program was to prevent the Nationalists for linking with the youth. The youth running wild showed that this stipulation had been met. The nationalists were so busy fighting one another, each vying for the vanguard position; or trying to free themselves from the u.s. injustice system that no one had time for the youth- the next generation of Panthers. So the birth of the next generation was premature, in a climate of total stress and therefore unhealthy. The development was retarded and once again it was Winter in amerika. Twenty four years of winter was broken with a preview of things to come in the '90's. The Crips and the Bloods have opened up negotiations to stop the violence among themselves but still We have not offered them a suitable alternative to cause them (like the Panthers did) to join our ranks.
ON THEIR OWN
One such effort the Crips and the Bloods made to reach at us (showing that We have been giving rearguard leadership) was the structuring of serious organizations inside the koncentration kamps in the '80's. The Crips structured their Consolidated Crip Organization (CCO) and made the name Crips into an acronym meaning: Clandestine Revolutionary Internationalist Party Soldiers, (C.R.I.P.S.). While the Bloods did likewise and began the United Blood Nation (U.B.N.) Both began as righteous efforts to make the necessary leap from criminal/colonial mentality to conscious revolutionary mentality. The leadership of these two structures were strong. In fact in CCO, after being accepted in, on had to change his/her name and get an African name. Revolutionary study groups and periods were designated, as was exercise. One had to learn kiswahili and adhere to a disciplined structure consisting of quiet periods, alert periods, study periods and fasting periods. This was done in the restricting confines of san quentin and folsom prison kamps. Both these structures made appeals to so-called revolutionary groups for assistance and all but one had no rap for them. The CCO fell under tremendous repression when it was thought that they had corrected a pig in quentin. Being that quentin is situated by the city of oakland, the Brothas wrote to the African People's Socialist Party, who had a publication called "Burning Spear," and got no reply. And they were right across the bridge! Half a dozen other org's with publications were written, including the NOI and Final Call- all to no avail. The only org' that recognized us was the Spear & Shield Collective and they printed a piece. We wrote in CROSSROAD. We had to go to Chicago!
(See CR, vol. 1 no.3- "The case of Hekaya Kashif and Repression At San Quentin Prison", Taliba Safidi. pg 43-45)
Since there was little effort on anyone's part to take us serious as Revs, or supply us with any guidance as a parent org, both these structures have collapsed. In their place are two totally reactionary groupings- Blue Notes and Blood Line. So what's going on in So. Central? This is yet another effort by these courageous young street combatants to link themselves with an alternative to self murder. Most of these cats have been in koncentration kamps and know what amerika really means- prison, so they have little fear of the oppressor. The oppressor, on the other hand, has a problem. He has given us massive doses of chemical warfare; he has shot us up, turned around and given us assault weapons to shoot ourselves with; locked us up in koncentration kamps from huntingdon to pelican bay and still he cant stop the 'gangs' of So. Central L.A. So he's dispatched his elite group of political police to L.A. in wake of the rebellion. But that was just a public display. In actuality, he sent 300 federal agents to L.A. known as "Division Five." Along with them he's sent William S. Hogan, AKA, "the GangBreaker." Hogan is fresh off the trail of the El Rukns, of Chicago, where he supposedly "ruined their organization single-handedly."(!) If We don't work with these Brothas, the state will organize those they let live, let out or let in to work against us!
The reality is that street organizations, altho only re-action to the initial action of colonialism, are a problem inside of Our Nation. These are Our citizens running rampant in the concrete jungles of this kounttry. And so it is Our responsibility to reach for ourselves, in reaching for them. It's not as complicated as one may think. For instance, what do street organizations fight for? Turf, their hood - Land. Something to call their own. What do they have allegiance to ? A Flag- thus they are patriotic to their particular "nation." Their flag is a symbol of Independence. How do they function? The majority of them live in a socialistic type of lifestyle in the "gang":From each according to his ability, to each according to his need. Therefore, Land, Independence and socialism can be very appealing to " Brothas off the block." i know, cause i am a 17 year veteran of the Crips. i was a member of CCO and from there i made the necessary change. (See Monster; Autobiography of An L.A. Crip). More and more Brothas and Sistahs are beginning to see the light, but if We as aren't in the making as viable avenues of construction for them then they will resent us and quite possibly become antagonistic towards us. i don't know about you, but its not a warming feeling to know that you are wanted by forty seven thousand irate bangers with assault weapons!
Let us not be swayed by amerika's criminalization of these Brothas (& Sistah) who have been said to be "exporting narco-terrorism" across amerika. The fact is aint no coca leaves grown in South Central. Ain't no gun factories controlled by New Afrikan People, let alone Crips or Bloods. These are tool's of destruction deliberately set in place by the oppressor. We have gotten hold of them as a survival tactic - its the only rope that has been thrown. Now, We as Revs, must throw another rope, one of healthy development, Socialist Construction and an Independent Ideology.
"If We are not for ourselves then who will be for us, if not now, then when?" MX
SSP 1340 W. Irving Park Road #108, Chicago, Il 60613